In an exclusive conversation with Filmipop.com, Arshad Warsi, Sagarika Ghatge, Divya Dutta and debutant director Aparnaa Singh talked about their upcoming eco-thriller film Irada and their characters in the film and more.
Tell us about your film and your characters in your film.
Aparnaa: It's a film which has a stellar cast and a deep subject. It's had thriller and nuances of what's happening in Punjab and its premises. It's a great story and you'll enjoy it.
Divya: Well my character is totally characterless in this movie. I am playing the negative role of CM who wants Arshad's character to do his job and lots of mean stuff to do and it's something I haven't done before. So it's a different experience for me to play this character.
Arshad: I am playing a cop and I enjoy playing them actually. It was a great fun to have somebody like you watch all the time, you see all the time. But when you put some nuances in it, then you enjoy watching that character which is what we have done in this film. He is someone who knows his job but he does weird things, he talks differently which is fun to watch. So I have thoroughly enjoyed playing this character.
Sagarika: My character's name is Maya. She is a journalist and it was great fun playing the character and our director Aparnaa has written it so well that she made her very strong who also has a lot of emotions as well. So being a journalist, she had to be very brave and ask a lot of questions. So it was a mix of emotions and enjoyed being a part of this film with such great characters.
What was your Irada behind making this Irada?
Arshad: Well our Irada was to make a good film that we did. To do a good sensible, well written, thrilling and which has a message to it. And Aparnaa's Irada was to show the actual issue which was going on. It's good to have films like these. The thing is, in the industry, we make films which are safe where you put some comedy, some songs in it, fight sequences, shoot at good locations so that people would come and watch it and our cost will be recovered. So there are very few filmmakers who take risk of making a film that is relevant. Which has some importance and which would make audiences aware about the things happening around them. So it's really good. We have producer who actually said that we really don't care whether this film makes money or how much you lose, I just want to make a sensible film and want people to know and see a respectable film.
Sagarika: And it's a intelligent film. I think when people see me after Chak De India and then Irada, I feel very proud to be a part of this film.
You are playing a sarcastic cop in the film.
Arshad: Not sarcastic actually. He's quirky. It's fun and entertaining to watch. I'll tell one thing which I was having a chat about the fact is that we dramatise professions in your films. Like if you are in an operation theatre, doctors are never that serious. They are never in that space where everything which is dramatised that is cinema. The environment inside is quite relaxed actually. That's how I feel about cops. It's there job to do what they do, that is, investigation. And if they take their every investigation dramatically, they would literally go mad. So they need to chill you know. And that's how they do, that's how they work. I mean the way you are talking to us, you don't probably talk to your colleagues and in the office there's a different atmosphere and that's how it is. So this is something that a lot of people haven't seen and cops like these very rarely come in our films. So I thought I would do something new with it.
Did you observe anyone to play this role?
Arshad: Myself in the mirror (Laughs). No. I don't do that. I just feel that it's not that complicated unless and until you have to play the character which is very complicated or a biography where you have to study those people. But if something is a figment of your imagination, then I think fair enough to think a little bit and do it. That's what I do. I could be totally wrong but its working.
You have been through a lot of struggle in your life since your childhood but you kept on doing things that made you the Arshad Warsi you are today.
Arshad: See I'll tell you how it is. It's nothing to do with my profession, it's about all professions. It's about everybody. You must believe in yourself. But the reality is, if you are not a superman, don't believe that you are a superman. That's stupidity. But the fact is, if you are getting in your profession, you better know that profession. You have to. If you want to be a chef, you better know how to cook good. If you want to do acting, you better know how to act. So that is the first thing. And after crossing that circle, I would just say that don't give up and keep going. But if you don't know that first step, you want to be a star, you want to be an actor, but if you don't know acting then go find some other profession for yourself. That would be smart. With me, yes, after getting into the movies I realised that I can act. Before that, I didn't even know. That's the reality. I think most people in their 30s, don't know what they want to do in their life. The fact is as soon as I did my first film, I knew that I can act and this is something that comes to me easily and I am enjoying doing this and then I pursued it and then there was nothing stopping me. No job, no film, it's just a matter of time. The moment you start believing in yourself, sooner or later, others will start believing in you.
You've recently turned author for biography Me and Ma which talks about your journey and your mother.
Divya: Me and Ma is ofcourse a daughter's tribute to her mother. About the moments which I felt were very special which are most of them are from my life. So this chapter is dedicated to everybody. One thing is for sure that when you'll read it, you just want to go and hug your mom and just say I love you.
This is second time you are teaming up with Arshad in a film after Zila Ghaziabad. Did you feel any difference working with him over these years?
Divya: I just had two films with him. So I am gonna make it more often. But it's been fun. He is delighted to work with. And I think he is one of the most spontaneous actors that I know. And it's great to just mill that magic on the sets and let just things happen and take their own form. It's just great.